You’d think that once you’ve given birth to four babies, you’d know what to do when you have your fifth. You’d have yourself together and be ever so ready for the birth. But, that’s not really the case. Each birth is unique and you can never really be 100% prepared about it.
With our two previous NSD babies, I felt nothing up until the 40th or 41st week. This one felt different. Unlike my previous pregnancies, I was already starting to feel our little girl getting ready to come earth-side by the 37th week. I would have contractions, although inconsistent, and would really feel she can come any time so I would take it easy to slow it down.
“Give us some more time,” my husband and I would always ask our little girl.
We had so many things on our plate around the time of her due date.
Ava was celebrating her birthday. I was going to celebrate mine too. And my husband also needed to submit his requirements for promotion.
We prayed she’d come once we’ve settled everything already. The last activity being my birthday dinner.
And our little girl listened.
Because as soon as my birthday ended, at 1 in the morning the following day, I started feeling contractions. This time, more consistent and more powerful.
The contractions started at 45 minutes apart. Then I found myself being awakened by the pain every 15 minutes. By breakfast time, the contractions were 8 minutes apart.
We were checked in at Crimson Hotel that time so we decided to check out a little earlier so we have time to bring our kids to their grandmother’s house before we head to the hospital.
There was a celebration waiting for me at home prepared by my sister and aunt. I was planning to have lunch with them then, but by the time we reached my mom’s house, the contractions have become so painful and close together already that we decided to skip my post-birthday lunch and drive straight to the hospital.
Because I progressed so slow in my previous pregnancies, I still didn’t feel like hurrying up.
When we arrived at the hospital, I was expecting we’d be waiting for at least a day before our little girl is born.
“I’m probably just at 3cm,” I thought to myself. That’s how I felt if I compared it with my previous experiences of labor.
When I arrived at the OB Gyne Complex, I was immediately hooked to a machine that checks the strength of and the time in between contractions. An OB came in soon after and asked if she can perform an IE.
After the IE, the doctor said she’ll need to report to my OB and to get my husband dressed already.
I was a bit unsure what was going on.
Why did she seem to be in a hurry?
Why did she say my husband already needs to get dressed?
A few minutes later, a nurse came into the exam room and helped me change into hospital clothes. She said she’ll transfer me to my birthing room already. I asked her how far I am already and I was surprised when she said I’m already at 6cm!
She walked me to the birthing room and to my surprise again, the birthing pool was already ready. (The last time I had a water birth, they didn’t set it up until hours later.)
My husband soon arrived, in his scrubs.
I wanted him to go down to our car and get our luggage but the doctors won’t let him anymore. They kept saying that the baby can come anytime.
That was 2 in the afternoon.
To be honest, I wasn’t mentally prepared for the birth to happen that fast.
I thought I’d still have time to rest; to eat.
But, the contractions became more intense and closer together so quickly.
I walked around the room a bit, until I felt like I needed to get into the water already.
I thought I was just getting in to ease the pain I was feeling in my back. However, as soon as I got in, the contractions became even more powerful and I started feeling the urge to push.
By that time, my OB and her team all went into the birthing room – all in their scrubs and ready to assist me.
They helped me control my breathing as wave after wave of contractions started coming.
They counted in the background as I tried to push with the more intense contractions. All while massing my back and pouring warm water on me.
I felt like it’s been forever already.
At one point, I looked at my husband and asked him to opt for a c-section already because I was in so much pain. I had no epidural. All I had was the warm water.
But my husband and my birth team continued to cheer me on. “You’re close,” they kept saying, “Just a little more.”
I was crying in pain because I felt like the pressure of the baby going down, but no matter how much I pushed, she wasn’t coming out.
My OB told me she’s going to do one more IE to help me out. And the moment she did, I felt the baby make her way out.
The whole room fell silent. My OB asked everyone to allow me to go with the flow on my own.
With all my strength, I pushed with every contraction.
And then I felt the ring of fire.
I was crowning.
Two more big pushes and my little girl went swimming out in the birthing pool.
It was 7:15 in the evening when our little girl, Chance Erin, came earth-side.
My OB took her out of the water and she let out a cry.
She then placed my baby on my chest as they waited for the placenta to come out.
After several minutes, a doctor took Chance to clean her up and have her dad cut the cord while I was assisted to a bed to check on my vitals.
Once we were both cleared, we were left in the room to recover.
Everything happened so fast.
But also just as I hoped it to be.
Water Birth Details
Hospital: St. Luke’s Medical Center Global City
OB Gyne: Dra. Karen Ty-Torredes
Things to prepare: Birth plan, Letter request to use the water birth facilities of the hospital